We are a product of the GUIs that shaped us

This weekend a friend of mine called me and declared that he’d finally figured out why it took him so long to learn how to use his iPod.  Bear in mind he’s normally pretty tech savvy.  He wasn’t aware that the main way of navigating was by tracing a circle around the circumfrence  of the touch pad or “Apple Click Wheel.”

“I’ve been trained to understand things linear,” he said woefully. “Up, down means scrolling through a list. Right, left means moving forward and back.  IT’S NOT LIKE THAT WITH THE iPOD!!!!”

Then he paused and I’m sure we both thought…. “It’s brilliant.”

Apparently both of us when first using the iPod used it the way we’d use a normal web-based GUI and we assumed the buttons and controls worked that way. WRONG! Boy, did I feel like a regular orangutan, but I walked away from the experience feeling like I was walking a little more upright that day.

Image of the older model but the navigation features still follow the same concept


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My place outside of work to explore and make connections with the ideas and things (sometimes work-related) that I'm passionate about.

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